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Hey everyone. I just got my first lab (she is 8 weeks) and I've got a few questions. The biggest thing right now that she is doing is biting. She doesn't do it hard, just to play. It's usually not a big deal unless we are outside (though sometimes inside too). When we are out in my backyard, she will bite my pant leg and pull and not let go. She thinks my pant leg is a rope. One solution would be to not wear pants outside, but I think my neighbors would complain ;D. All kidding aside, how can I go about stopping this? I've tried telling her no and then giving her another toy and saying "good girl" but she will go right back for the pant leg. She also likes to bite my forearm. If this (the arm thing) is only temporary and doesn't need to be corrected, I can ignore it. But I certainly don't want her to turn into a dog that nips at people.

Also, since Wed she has only eaten about 2 cups of food. She likes to eat flowers and weeds though. I think she has an upset stomach.

I'm sure I'll have a lot of other questions as time comes!

Since this is my first post, a bit about her. I got her from a Michigan Humane Society shelter. She is a black lab with some Collie in her, but you actually can't tell. She looks purebred. They only know the Collie part from knowing one of her parents. At 8 weeks she can already climb upstairs and downstairs from my bedroom (full flight of stairs). She managed to find a heat register that the screw was loose and she got the register off the wall.

Thanks for any advice and help!

 

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One thing I've found that works to teach a dog not to bite at your hands and arms is this: put a high-value treat (like a little hot dog or cooked chicken) in the palm of your hand and close your fist. Then let her sniff your hand. She'll probably lick and bite at it too. Don't give her the treat until she stops licking and biting your hand - say good girl and open your hand to give the treat. This helps teach a dog not to be mouthy. For the pant leg, you can tell her "off" and walk away. If that doesn't work, put her on a leash for awhile when you take her out and when she starts biting at your pant leg, pull the leash a little in the opposite direction and tell her "off".
 

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Welcome. Definately peruse our best advice thread.

What are you feeding her?

And I would definately say that she's a mix...but a cute one at that. :)
 

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What a little cutie!

Definately work on the biting issue. It is a typical puppy problem, but annoying, 'cause those puppy teeth are SHARP!

Be really careful about the pup eating plants and weeds. Easier said than done though! There are a lot of garden plants that are poisonous.
 

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What a sweetheart!!! yeah puppy teeth..ouch, my advice....alot of chew toys, remember she is tooth-ing, she has 2, if she keeps on biting at your pant leg cause u think she thinks it's rope well get her some rope. She will soon lose those baby teeth and develop her big dog teeth which are not as sharp but alot more sturdy, till then, alot of chew toys and the occasional "NO!" in your best deep voice.
About the not eating thing, she will, remember it is traumatic for your puppy being with a new family, not being with momma and sibling, so she will come out of her shell and eat, give her as much attention as you can so she feel's welcome, and yes watch out what kinda plants she may be tearing at, some are poisenous, be careful! good luck with ur new baby!!!

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Lab characeristics are often dominant in hybrids and you have a really great looking pup.

Training techniques vary in their effectiveness with individual differences in the puppy and also in the owner/trainer. A common problem for all Lab puppies is the chewing stage while they have their puppy teeth. I suspect the teeth must itch and maybe chewing helps alleviate that temporarily.

What worked well for Puff and me, when she started chewing computer wires, eye glasses, ankles, wrists, table legs, stair steps, etc., was to give her a Hartz Mountain "chew stick" -- that's a cigarillo size stick of finely chopped rawhide compressed into shape with a flavored, digestible glue-like medium.

I bought a large package at "Wally World" and ALWAYS had several with me, ready to whip out, offer to Puff, and distract and substitute.

While it doesn't have to be "Hartz Mountain" brand I STRONGLY recommend that you do NOT use ANY which do not have 1-800/888 telephone #s, PLUS company names & addresses, AND guarantees of complete customer satisfaction.

That's because there are many cheaper similar products made in many 3rd world countries which may use chemical processing which upsets the digestive systems of puppies. There have been MANY reports of dogs getting upset stomachs from eating these. So, IF you're going to try these, for your Lab's sake, only try the safe ones.

Also, some people report great results in using wash cloths that are thoroughly wetted and then frozen to offer to the pup to chew on. Those soothe the irritation, itching, or whatever.

ALSO, along the lines of the DISTRACT & SUBSTITUTE approach, consider putting a few kibbles into a one gallon plastic milk jug, and then using pliers to mash the opening to a size that lets just a few kibbles easily come out. As your Lab gains expertise in getting the goodies, constrict the opeing a bit more.

CAUTION: You'll have to monitor the chewing on the mouth/opening of the jug; Labs/puppy teeth easily break off plastic shards. Remove these before they can be swallowed.
 

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A puppy younger than about 10 weeks hasn't learned the bite inhibition that he would have from his brothers and sisters. This is your big chance to teach him! When he bites, squeal really loudly and then completely ignore him for about 5 minutes. You may have to leave the room for him to get the real effect of this. You have to do this every time, though, for it to work, and everyone in the family has to do it.

Also, a wet washcloth in the freezer makes a great teething toy.

All in all, he's probably going to do at least some biting until hes about 4-6 months old.
 
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